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Thread: Formula 1 warns of sanctions over racial abuse in Barcelona

  1. #1
    Elite Member january's Avatar
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    Angry Formula 1 warns of sanctions over racial abuse in Barcelona

    The FIA will not tolerate a repeat of the racial abuse directed at Lewis Hamilton by Spanish fans at Barcelona this weekend, after it warned of 'sanctions' being taken if the matter is not dealt with. Hamilton and his McLaren team found themselves on the receiving end of jeers and insults throughout the test at the Circuit de Catalunya as Spanish fans vented their feelings against them in public.
    Reports in the Spanish papers suggested that some of the insults against Hamilton even had a racial element - with Marca claiming that shouts of "puto negro" (fucking black) and "negro de mierda" (black shit) were clearly heard, and that large sections of the crowd were involved.
    Spanish fans believe that Fernando Alonso was treated unfairly by McLaren last year when he raced alongside Hamilton.
    Circuit de Catalunya officials tried their best to respond to the situation, by putting fences up around the McLaren area in the paddock and removing abusive banners from the grandstands. Extra security guards were also put in place in the grandstands to deal with the fans.
    But the FIA has made it clear that it is still unhappy with the events of the weekend, and warned that action will be taken if there is a repeat of the racial abuse in the future.
    An FIA spokesman told autosport.com: "The FIA is surprised and disappointed at the abuse directed at Lewis Hamilton.
    "Abuse of this kind is a clear breach of the principles enshrined in the FIA statutes and any repetition will result in serious sanctions."
    The FIA's intolerance of racism is enshrined in its Statutes, with Article 1 stating: "The FIA shall refrain from manifesting racial, political or religious discrimination in the course of its activities and from taking any action in this respect."
    Although there has been no official clarification of what sort of sanctions could be taken by the FIA, autosport.com understands that it may extend as far as stripping the Circuit de Catalunya of its Grand Prix.
    It will now be up to Barcelona track officials to ensure that a response is taken to guarantee no repeat of the events at either tests or the Spanish Grand Prix in April.
    The Circuit de Catalunya currently has a deal to host the Spanish Grand Prix until 2016, having extended its contract with F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone last year.
    Moreover, repeats of such abuse at other Spanish test tracks - including Valencia and Jerez, where the Formula One teams test repeatedly prior to the season's start - could even lead to sanctions against the Spanish motorsport authorities overall.
    Speaking about the situation on Saturday, a McLaren spokesman pointed out the team's respect for Spain.
    "McLaren has raced and tested on Spanish circuits for many years and everyone connected with the team regards Spain and the Spanish people with great affection, Lewis included," the spokesman said.


    autosport.com - F1 News: FIA warns of sanctions over racial abuse


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    Elite Member twitchy's Avatar
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    "familly"? I'm not remotely surprised to see they can't spell. Their ignorance goes well with their racism.

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    Elite Member Honey's Avatar
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    With blacked-up faces and wigs, it was like a return to the worst racist excesses of 30 years ago.



    This was the appalling scene that greeted Lewis Hamilton when the Formula One star visited Barcelona for a test session.
    The noisy group of spectators, wearing T-shirts saying "Hamilton's Family", turned their fire on the British driver after his season-long feud with local hero Fernando Alonso. Scroll down for more ...
    Disgusting: Fans with black-up faces and T-shirts saying 'Hamilton's Family' mock Lewis Hamilton in Barcelona



    Hamilton was probably expecting a cool reception but what he got at the Circuit de Catalunya at Montmelo in Northern Barcelona was a sustained hail of racist abuse from spectators that could cost Spain its Grand Prix status.
    Slogans were chanted at Hamilton, who is blamed for denying Alonso last year's title, whenever he entered the pits.
    Spectators shouted "black s***", "black whore" and "f****** blacks" while several others mocked him by wearing black make-up and wigs.
    Other drivers were visibly shocked at the relentless abuse even though racism is rife in Spanish football.
    The Spanish FA was fined 44,750 after England stars Ashley Cole and Shaun Wright-Phillips were subjected to the "monkey" chants during a 2004 "friendly".
    Yesterday Sports Minister Gerry Sutcliffe condemned the latest outbreak and questioned whether the FIA, the sport's governing body, should allow Spain to host another Grand Prix.
    Abused: Lewis Hamilton pictured during testing at the Circuit de Catalunya on Saturday



    "I was shocked by those sickening images. How on earth were fans dressed like this allowed into the circuit?" he asked.
    "Racism should not be tolerated and this is not the first time British sportsmen have been racially abused in Spain.
    "This brings into question whether the Grand Prix should be held at this track."
    Mr Sutcliffe added: "I am also going to write to the Spanish Sports Minister to express our ongoing concern about racism suffered by our sportsmen."
    Alonso was expected to clinch his third straight championship last year but McLaren teammate Hamilton, in his first season, regularly took points off him and eventually Ferrari's Kimi Raikonnen won the title.
    Yesterday Hamilton said: "The truth is that I feel somewhat sad, I am in love with this country, and especially the city of Barcelona and this circuit, which is one of my three favourites.
    "The people in Spain have always been very warm with me and - even though I imagined what might happen - it has not been pleasant.
    "I would like them to understand my position. The only thing that I have done is to try to give the best of myself and try to win the championship. Scroll down for more...
    Rude: Spanish spectator swears and makes insulting gesticulations at Lewis Hamilton



    "At no point have I tried to deliberately prejudice Fernando but the fight was very tough and my image in Spain has been severely damaged."
    The FIA has already warned that Spain, which is due to host two races this year, at Barcelona and Valencia, could be stripped of both its Grand Prix.
    A spokesman said: "An act of this kind is a clear breach of the principles enshrined in the FIA statutes and any repetition will result in sanctions."
    The bosses at the Circuit de Catalunya, which is due to host a Grand Prix in April, say they have acted to prevent any repeats.
    Director Ramon Pradera said: "We have already spoken to the FIA assuring them that we will eliminate all racist elements."
    Britain's last world champion, Damon Hill, said: "It's time to come out of those caves and civilise ourselves.
    "I think the FIA should show how serious this is. If necessary they should cancel the Spanish races."




    "I never tried to harm Fernando (Alonso) deliberately, but the battle was very tough, and my image in Spain has been badly damaged."
    Alonso, 26, from Asturias in northern Spain, was Hamilton's team-mate at McLaren but has since returned to Renault. In the most closely-fought Formula One title in years, both eventually missed out in the last race to Kimi Raikkonen, who claimed the world title.

    Lewis Hamilton so 'sad' after racist thugs hurl abuse during test run in Spain | the Daily Mail

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    Elite Member january's Avatar
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    If they don't cancel both of the races, I'll have very little respect for F1 racing anymore. Lewis Hamilton is such a nice guy, he's handled this with a lot of class. I really can't believe this.
    Women ain't gonna let a thing like sense fuck up their argument. - Chris Rock

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    Elite Member Chilly Willy's Avatar
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    The black faces are realy disturbing. Have people no sensitivity whatsoever?

    Many European football leagues have rules for this. If the fans of one team are caught yelling racist slurs, and it is proven (video, photo) that they belong to that particular team, than the other one automatically wins and the team in question has to pay a fine.
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    Elite Member celeb_2006's Avatar
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    I'm sure that happens a lot in other places too but still this is rather disgusting to say the least.

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